Well check off life goals #1 and #2 for Devante Downs of Mountlake Terrace High School in Washington. That is possible today because #2 was just checked off. #1 went down earlier in the year as he raked in several offers to premier schools in the Pac 12 and beyond.
“My #1 Goal has always been to get to a great academic college and to get that education paid for,” said Downs. ”There are several great schools that have offered to do that next year for me. So I consider that goal in the final phase.”
But that left Goal #2. And it was not a small one.
“I have always had my #2 goal to be named to play in the US Army All American Game,” said Devante. ”Something about watching the other guys from the NW go down there to Texas and play on National TV is just really special to me.”
Today folks he was not only nominated but invited to play. That makes him one of the 90 Premier guys in the Nation. One of only 45 who will be named to America’s most prestigious All American Game, Downs along with Bellevue High School’s Budda Baker are both considered among the very best in the Nation and now both have been invited.
Baker has already stated he will play in the big game. It took Devante all of about 10 minutes to decide after receiving the very official delivery and envelope with the invite and a lot of other materials.
John Downs texted us right away as we get involved in this sort of thing from a nomination and “Let me pitch you our kid” stand point.
“I want you to know how much I appreciate anything and everything you have done for Devante. He got his All American letter today and his invite to PLAY IN THE GAME,” said John with obvious pride.
Imagine that. The father of an All American. And he knew his son was good but this was really big.
What about Devante himself? What was his take on this?
“I knew the hard work would pay off. It was unreal to get the invite and open and read it. It was pretty inspiring and I think it is still sinking in,” he said. ”I am playing in the game for sure.”
Now the 6’3″ 230 lb cruiser is being courted by 11 schools who have offered so far and another 10 or so who seem to be close. Vanderbilt offered a while back and now Tennessee is in on the act asking for lots of film and this comes on the heels of a Stanford and Cal offer.
The Army staff want him as a Linebacker for the big game. Colleges are split 60/40 in favor of running back. So we asked Downs who he would like to emulate from the NFL?
“Adrian Peterson. He does it all so well and that is what I want to be known for and what I am training for.”
Mountlake Terrace as far as we know has never had an All American. And Downs hopes he can get a game jersey to hang in the school and one for himself to remember forever. And this will mean a ton for the kids from his school and the football team too.
“It is a big day for all of us. Everyone that helped me is a part of this. I have not been able to reach my Coach yet but he is going to be so happy,” he added.
This season Downs has a personal goal of 2000 yards and 30 TD’s as a running back. And the team goal is even more important.
“We have a team goal to win the first play off game in school history. We are going to focus and work for that this season very hard.”
Next up? Track. The Army All American has a meet next week and will run the 200 and one of the 4 x 100 legs. You want to see a big kid that can really move on the track? He is your guy.
We end it here. For now. And what can we say but congrats Devante! Congrats!
What about that 3rd Goal? Well we know what it is but lets let that one simmer just a little bit yet. More on that one after a while.